Progress Toward Sustainability: A Report Card and a Recommended Agenda

11 Pages Posted: 18 Apr 2009 Last revised: 23 Jul 2015

See all articles by John C. Dernbach

John C. Dernbach

Widener University - Commonwealth Law School

Date Written: April 17, 2009


This Article summarizes and synthesizes the findings and recommendations of the 41 contributing authors to Agenda for a Sustainable America (John C. Dernbach ed., Environmental Law Institute, 2009). Part I of this Article is an overview of what the United States has achieved or not achieved concerning sustainability since 2002. While the United States has mostly moved in the wrong direction, there was significant progress in at least six areas: local governance, brownfields redevelopment, business and industry, higher education, kindergarten through 12th grade education, and religious organizations. Part II of this Article identifies 10 broad recommendations that the contributing authors make for the next 5 to 10 years. The journey toward sustainability will almost certainly take more than a generation. The purpose of these recommendations is to identify concrete steps that can be taken right now.

Keywords: [comma separated]sustainable development, sustainable development-United States, sustainability, consumption, climate change, Agenda for a Sustainable America, population, poverty, international trade, international finance, official development assistance, natural resources, waste, toxic chemicals,

JEL Classification: O10, O20, O51, Q00, Q10, Q20, Q30, Q40, Q01

Suggested Citation

Dernbach, John C., Progress Toward Sustainability: A Report Card and a Recommended Agenda (April 17, 2009). Environmental Law Reporter, Vol. 39, p. 10276, 2009, Widener Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No. 09-12, Available at SSRN:

John C. Dernbach (Contact Author)

Widener University - Commonwealth Law School ( email )

3800 Vartan Way
Harrisburg, PA 17110-9380
United States

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